Prior to the 1860s, there are no records of women in dentistry. Lucky for all of us, that status changed when an uneducated, but otherwise obviously clinically talented, Emeline Roberts Jones joined her husband’s dental practice in 1855.
Lucy Beaman Hobbs is credited as the first woman to actually graduate from a dental school. She reportedly was a schoolteacher when she attempted to apply to dental school, and was refused admission because of her sex. She then managed to privately apprentice under the kind tutelage of the dean of the Ohio College of Dental Surgery. In 1865, she was finally admitted to the Ohio College of Dental Surgery.
Ms. Hobbs went on to marry a Civil War veteran, James Taylor. She trained her husband to become a dentist and together they practiced in Kansas. She was also devoted to social causes, in particular women’s rights. Fast forward to the future where the American Association of Women Dentists (AAWD)’s top honor is the Lucy Hobbs Taylor Award – we understand why!
Today, approximately 32% of all dentists are women. And we’re extremely proud to remind our friends and patients that this percentage includes two of Dr. Levine’s favorite females, his wife, Dr. Sheryl Radin (founder of Growing Smiles pediatric dental practice and named a Top Pediatric Dentist in Bucks County) and his daughter, Dr. Bari Levine, a practicing pediatric dentist who is also CEO and founder of the Growing Smiles Foundation, an organization of dental practitioners that provides comprehensive dental services to Peruvian orphans.